Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter is a funny time of year.

I don’t take it seriously because it seems like such a contrived holiday; the unnatural marriage of eggs and chocolate, rabbits and Jesus nailed to a cross, the whole "rising from the dead" all seems so random mixed in with an extra early and long church service.

My father used to really get into Easter. As a kid, I remember waking up to a wicker basket filled with plastic bunny grass, jelly beans, chocolates and peeps. For some strange reason, he would buy my mother and me corsages and a boutonnière for my brother and father. He would get up early and pick them up from a florist, each in their own clear plastic container. The corsages and boutonnières would rest on a doily, and they would wait in our refrigerator’s crisper until the moments before we left to go to church. Then he would pin it on my lapel or shoulder strap of my dress. I wasn’t really allowed to eat any Easter candy prior to attending church so for the entire hour long service I would fantasize about which chocolates I would try first. Some years I would get smart and sneak some of the smaller candies into a pocket or purse and discreetly munch on them during mass.

Years later, post divorce and well into the years my brother and I started down our paths of individual self-destruction, my father attempted to rekindle some Easter tradition for our broken and dysfunctional family remnants. As teens, our love for chocolate only intensified, so my father would get us chocolate rabbits, robin eggs, peeps, some of the usual Easter candy fare. One year my brother and I put together a basket for our father—but instead of chocolate and candy we filled it with pastel colored Tums and Rolaids, summer sausage, cheddar cheese and crossword puzzle book. My father likes to have an Easter egg hunt, and would get the fillable plastic eggs and hide them all over the house. Some would have candy in them and some would have money—quarters or singles. He also hid two twenty dollar bills—always in the same two spots. He would hide one in the litter box and one in the garbage disposal. I would always get the $20 in the garbage disposal because I was the only one in the family with a hand small enough to fit down the drain. My brother, being such a giant hulk of a guy realized he would never get the $20 out of the garbage disposal and would always go straight for the twenty in the cat litter.

Those were some good times.

On a completely different note, have you ever microwaved a marshmallow peep?

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